The Collegian
Saturday, April 13, 2024

Live blog: Richmond vs. William & Mary

Richmond battles William & Mary for playoff spot

Q4, 1:56 -- Fisher is running the time out for the Spiders, as he earns about 20 yards and another first down. The Spiders are nearing victory. 

Q4, 3:45 -- Richmond continues to gain a few yards at a time and the clock is really running out. Brown catches a screen pass and breaks a tackle for another first down. The Tribe's chances are all but gone. 

Q4, 6:00 -- The Spiders are opting to run the ball, despite gaining little to no yardage. They choose to throw on third-and-long though, and Strauss finds Diggs for a first down. The clock continues to tick away, as do the Tribe's playoff hopes. 

Q4, 7:03 -- Another pass falls incomplete because of solid defense from Ogunniyi, and the Tribe are forced to punt away after just three plays. Richmond is just seven minutes away from claiming the Capitol Cup. 

Q4, 7:45 -- On William & Mary's first play of the possession, Justin Williamson wreaks havoc for Cluley, sacking him for a 12-yard loss. On the next play, a pass bounces off of McBride's hands and falls incomplete. 

Richmond stat of the night: The Spiders are 6-0 when scoring 30 or more points this season. The team currently has 34. 

Q4, 8:02 -- Diggs wins against a defender on a slant route, and Strauss delivers a perfect pass for the touchdown. The score is now 34-20, and the Spiders will have to hang on to this lead for just eight more minutes. 

Q4, 9:00 -- Fisher goes up the middle, but there is no running room. The Tribe defense has played well against the goal-line offense of Richmond tonight. Another run to Green gains just two yards, and Richmond is in a third-and-2 situation. 

Q4, 10:20 -- After a screen pass to Diggs gains four yards, the Spiders face a third and 6 from the Tribe's 13. Strauss finds Ponder across the middle on third down, who bobbles but makes the catch for eight yards and a first down. 

Q4, 11:30 -- The Spiders gain 10 yards, but these are negated by another procedural penalty. On first and 15, Green runs around the left side for five yards to set up a second and 10. 

Q4, 11:37 -- Saboor fights for extra yards and consequently fumbles the ball. Evan Kelly recovers for the Spiders at the Tribe 17-yard line, giving Strauss' offense a prime opportunity. 

Q4, 11:56 -- Richmond punts to the 5-yard line, but a procedural penalty forces a re-punt. This time the punt is fair caught at the 25-yard line, turning a five-yard penalty into a 20-yard difference in field position. 

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Q4, 12:30 -- A pair of short plays force the Spiders into a third and 5 from about midfield. A Strauss pass is knocked down at the line of scrimmage, forcing Richmond to punt. 

Q4, 14:00 -- Strauss rolls out left and finds Ponder on a short pass, but he spins and takes it to the 46-yard line for a 14-yard gain. 

Q4, 14:40 -- The Tribe goes deep to Dedmon, but the defense is solid and the pass falls incomplete. Richmond gets the ball back after a punt from William & Mary and will start on offense at the 30-yard line. 

At the end of three, the Spiders lead 27-20. The defenses have been more effective in the second half, but the game remains close. The ending should be an exciting one. 

Q3, :02 -- Reggie Barnette stops Dedmon on a run for a loss of about six yards. 

Q3, :46 -- Another sideline throw to Ballard and another first down. The Tribe have realized how easy those throws are against the conservative Spider defense. 

Q3, 2:23 -- Saboor has another pair of carries totaling nine yards. The Tribe faces a one-yard third down attempt, which it converts on a wildcat run up the middle from Saboor. 

Q3, 2:57 -- Ballard makes a grab along the sideline for a gain of about 15 and a first down. The sideline throws have been open for the Tribe all game. 

Q3, 3:19 -- Luke Rhodes' name is called for the first time tonight, as he sacks Strauss on third down to force a punt. The Tribe will take over on offense at its own 25. 

Q3, 4:20 -- Strauss finds Westfall across the middle again, this time for just eight yards. Fisher is blasted backward on the next play by Airek Green for a loss of three. 

Q3, 5:28 -- The Spiders run for a short game, but a personal foul against the Tribe gives Richmond 15 yards and a first down. On the next play, Strauss hits Westfall across the middle for about 20 and a first down. 

Q3, 5:51 -- Two incomplete passes in a row fall through Tribe receivers' hands, and the Tribe will have to punt on fourth and 11. Green catches the kick and is buried at the Richmond 10. 

Q3, 7:04 -- McBride continues to tear through the defense with deep routes toward the sideline, as he catches another for 18 yards. McBride now has 134 yards tonight. On the next play, Wright makes a sound defensive stop in the backfield on Saboor for a loss of one. 

Q3, 7:18 -- Fisher carries up the middle and is barely touched on a 42-yard scamper to the end zone. The score gives the Spiders a 27-20 lead and Fisher the longest run of his career

Q3, 8:10 -- Richmond's offense has found life. Green runs for a solid nine yards, dragging defenders along the way. A flea-flicker attempt is unsuccessful on the next play, so Strauss opts to run around the edge instead and picks up two yards and a first down. 

Q3, 9:00 -- Strauss guns a pass toward the sideline, and Bevels makes a diving catch for the first down on third and 8. On the next play, Strauss goes deep and a pass-interference penalty is called against the Tribe, giving Richmond 15 yards and a first down. 

Q3, 9:50 -- Green catches a short pass, and the result is the same. He is flipped for no gain. 

Q3, 10:30 -- Hamlin takes the kickoff but is dragged down short of the 20-yard line at the 19. Green is upended on the first play of the drive for a two-yard gain. 

Q3, 11:30 -- Saboor takes another wildcat snap and counters back toward the left, carrying for two yards to put the Tribe in a third and 5 situation. A third down pass toward McBride in the end zone falls incomplete, so Carpenter kicks a 25-yard field goal to tie the game at 20. 

Q3, 13:00 -- Saboor carries twice in a row for a total of eight yards. The Tribe convert on a pass to the flats to Dedmon for 12 yards and another first down. 

Q3, 14:16 -- McBride makes a diving catch on the same route to the opposite side of the field, resulting in 19 more yards and another first down. 

Q3, 15:00 -- McBride takes the opening kickoff of the second half and returns it to the 26-yard line. He then makes a catch on a corner route for about 20 yards and a quick first down.

Lopsided stat of the first half: Richmond has run 46 offensive plays, while the Tribe has run just 28. Nevertheless, William & Mary is averaging more than two yards more than Richmond per play, which makes up for the massive play-count discrepancy. 

Brian Brown and Reggie Diggs have both moved into the top 10 all-time on Richmond's season receiving yards list. 

After one half of play, the Spiders lead the Tribe . The teams have been fairly evenly matched so far, as both teams have made explosive plays in the passing game and protected the ball. The game seems that it could be won by whoever has the ball last, because the offenses have both been effective. If turnovers come into play in the second half, expect the team with the least to win the game. 

Q2, :03 -- Yoder converts the 23-yard field goal to give the Spiders a 20-17 lead going into the half. The Spiders will still have to kick off one more time to end the half. 

Q2, :07 -- Fisher carries off-tackle left and is stopped short of the goal-line. On third down, Strauss throws incomplete in the back of the end zone intended for Diggs. The Tribe call a timeout, and Strauss convinces his coach to attempt a fourth-down conversion. The play is called dead though because of a false start, so Yoder will come on the kick the field goal. 

Q2, :17 -- Strauss is under pressure and throws deep to Brown, who catches it despite being drilled by a defender. A roughing-the-passer penalty will put Richmond at the 5-yard line with a first down. Green carries up the middle for four yards to the 1-yard line. 

Q2, :35 -- Strauss finds Bevels for 11 yards, then Green for another quick 13 yards. The Spiders are driving quick and effectively and might score before the half is over. 

Q2, 1:23 -- Carpenter kicks off deep again, forcing a Richmond touchback. Richmond's first play of the drive is a 13-yard screen pass to Green.

Q2, 1:23 -- Cluley throws a pass across the middle of the end zone that is caught by Ballard for his second touchdown of the day. The Tribe have tied the game at 17 near the end of the half. 

Q2, 1:40 -- Saboor lines up in the wildcat, takes the nap and carries for four yards to the Richmond 9. The Tribe will face a third and 3. 

Q2, 2:43 -- Saboor carries up the middle, drags defenders and spins out of trouble to gain 13 hard-earned yards.

Q2, 3:45 -- On the second play of the drive, Cluley finds McBride on a deep out route for 14 yards and a first down. On the next play, McBride attacks the other side of the defense, making a 20-yard catch for another first down. 

Q2, 4:28 -- Strauss bobbles the snap, hands it to Fisher and the Tribe stops him short to force a turnover on downs. William & Mary will regain possession. 

Q2, 5:52 -- Fisher and Porter Abell take back-to-back handoffs around the right edge and set the Spiders up with a third and 2 from the Tribe 36. Fisher runs and is stopped short, but the Spiders will again attempt to convert on fourth down.

Q2, 6:59 -- Fisher carries around the left edge and drags defenders for 17 yards. Ponder gets in on the action as well, catching a pass and juking defenders for 18 more yards. 

Q2, 7:09 -- Ayo Ogunniyi catches an interception in the end zone to give the Spiders the ball back. The receiver looked open, but Ogunniyi recovered and made an outstanding play. 

Q2, 8:00 -- Saboor continues to earn solid chunks of yardage on the ground, as he gains eight yards off tackle. On second down, he runs again and earns three yards and a first down. 

Q2, 9:00 -- Fisher runs up the middle and gains four, but not enough for the first down. The Spiders' punt is almost blocked, but Helkowski gets it away to the Tribe 48. 

Q2, 10:00 -- Richmond opts to throw deep on first down and the pass is dropped by Brown downfield. On second down, Strauss finds James Pavik in the flat for five yards. 

Q2, 10:08 -- On the next play, Winston Craig blasts through the offensive line and sacks Cluley for an eight-yard loss. Saboor tries to earn a first down on the ground on third and forever, but he is unsuccessful and the Tribe punt. The ball rolls to the Richmond 1-yard line, where multiple Tribe players are waiting to down the ball. Richmond will be hard-pressed to avoid a safety. 

Q2, 12:00 -- Cluley keeps the ball and runs right, but is dropped by Aaron Roane for no gain. 

Q2, 12:45 -- Saboor takes two straight handoffs for positive gains, totaling about 15 yards and earning the Tribe a first down. 

Q2, 13:22 -- Dedmon attempts to make up for his fumble with a solid 33-yard kick return to the Tribe 39-yard line. 

Q2, 13:36 -- A short run and an incomplete slant pass toward Diggs forces the Spiders into a third and 7. Strauss finds Diggs in the back corner of the end zone, who makes a beautiful diving catch and taps his foot to complete the 13-yard play. The play is reviewed but stands, and Strauss moves into third all-time on Richmond's list of passing touchdowns. The score is now 17-10, Spiders lead.

Q2, 14:30 -- Strauss completes to Green on a misdirection play into the flats for about five yards and a first down. 

Q2, 15:00 -- Fisher takes the handoff off-tackle and is stopped about one yard short of a first down. An injured Tribe player will stop play and give coach Danny Rocco time to decide to go for it on fourth down. 

At the end of the first quarter, the teams have been fairly evenly matched. Both have showed flashes on offense, and the only difference so far has been a recovered fumble by the Spiders, which has set them up in solid position to start the second quarter. That was William & Mary's first lost fumble since the fourth game of the season, which was at least two months ago. 

Q1, :20 -- Diggs catches another screen pass and takes it about eight yards to the Tribe 22. Green takes the handoff on the next play and goes nowhere, so the Spiders will face a short third down.

Q1, :46 -- The Tribe fumbles as Cluley attempts to hand it off to Devonte Dedmon. Eric Wright returns the fumble to the Tribe 30-yard line for the Spiders.

Q1, 1:58 -- McBride catches a screen pass and takes it 10 yards for a first down along the sideline. 

Q1, 2:51 -- Reed catches the kickoff and returns it to the Tribe 24. On the first play of the drive, Mikal Abdul-Saboor follows his blockers well and gains nine yards on the ground. 

Q1, 3:16 -- Strauss rolls out left and finds Ponder behind the defense for 36 yards through the air to the Tribe 1-yard line. Fisher carries on the next play for a one-yard touchdown, and Yoder's extra point ties the game at 10. 

Q1, 3:49 -- Green takes a delayed handoff up the middle and finds some running room. He earns a first down and 11 yards.

Q1, 4:04 -- Brown catches a pass in the flats and runs for a few yards and a first down. On the next play, Strauss looks for Brown again but the pass is broken up. 

Q1, 5:20 -- Green takes the handoff and cuts toward the middle of the field for a four-yard gain. On the next play, Bevels catches a screen pass and earns three yards. The Spiders face a third and 3.

Q1, 5:33 -- Strauss throws incomplete to open the drive, but a holding penalty is called against the Tribe. The Spiders gain five yards and a first down. 

Q1, 5:38 -- The kickers decided to stop playing around. Carpenter kicks a bomb that results in a Richmond touchback.

Q1, 5:38 -- On the second play of the drive, Cluley hits Sean Ballard in stride deep down the middle of the field for a 60-yard touchdown. The Tribe now leads 10-3.

Q1, 6:22 -- Yoder returns the favor to Carpenter, as he kicks off out of bounds as well. The Tribe will begin its drive at the 35-yard line.

Q1, 7:58 -- Fisher takes another inside handoff and goes five yards to the Tribe 7-yard line. Another short run makes it third and 3 for the Spiders. Strauss throws a corner route to Hunter Westfall in the back of the end zone, but he falls out of bounds. Peter Yoder converts a 24-yard field goal to tie the score at 3.

Q1, 8:03 -- A two-yard run from Green and an incomplete screen pass out the Spiders in a tough third and 8. Diggs runs an out route on third down, elevates and taps his feet in bounds to complete the 12-yard catch and earn another first down. Richmond looks to be finding a groove offensively, as Strauss is hitting all of his receivers and the running game is doing just enough. 

Q1, 9:00 -- Rashad Ponder catches a deep out route and is drilled, but he earned 11 more yards and another first down. 

Q1, 9:45 -- On third and 4, Brian Brown catches a slant route for 11 yards and a first down. Two plays later, Jacobi Green takes the handoff up the middle for 10 yards and another first down. 

Q1, 10:45 -- Seth Fisher takes the handoff up the middle for four yards. On the next play, Reggie Diggs catches a screen pass that is blown up by cornerback Trey Reed. 

Q1, 11:00 -- John Carpenter kicks off out of bounds, and the Spiders will start their second offensive drive at the 35-yard line. 

Q1, 11:30 -- On third and goal from the 7, Steve Cluley throws a pass that is tipped into the air and nearly intercepted. The Spiders do not complete the play though, and the Tribe converts a 20-yard field goal to lead 3-0 early. 

Q1, 12:45 -- The Tribe seems to be whatever it wants on offense early in this game, as some long runs and short, effective passes have the team at the 7-yard line.

Q1, 13:56 -- Tre McBride, the Tribe's star receiver, catches a 21-yard pass to open the drive. 

Q1, 14:30 -- The Spiders try two short screen passes to start the game, and only three yards are earned. On third and 7, Michael Strauss throws a pass over Jarmal Bevels' head and it falls incomplete. Richmond punts and the Tribe will take over at its own 46. 

Q1, 15:00 -- Richmond will start on offense, so we will get an early look at Michael Strauss and his offense. Jeremiah Hamlin takes the opening kickoff to the 23-yard line. 

Hello everyone, I'm Charlie Broaddus and I'll be providing you all with constant updates and analysis throughout tonight's game between the Richmond Spiders and William & Mary Tribe. The winner of this game will, in all likelihood, earn a spot in the FCS playoffs, so the stakes are high in this season's chapter of "The South's Oldest Rivalry." The story of this game will be Richmond's defense, because if it plays reminiscent of the past two weeks, the Spiders are in trouble. Also watch quarterback Michael Strauss' mobility, as his ankle injury is likely still bothering him after he took some hits last week. We are about 25 minutes from kickoff, stay tuned!

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